Grade retention is almost Never a good idea for a child with dyslexia, as the possible negative consequences far outweigh the benefits.
Dyslexia is not something that can be outgrown or cured by waiting for a child to mature; repeating the same curriculum a second time around will not help your child improve his basic skills.
What the Research Shows
Retention is far more likely to hurt your child than help him; this is especially true in the early elementary years.
Dozens of research studies conducted over 25 years show that students who are retained because they are performing poorly usually fall even further behind over time.
Children who are promoted despite concerns about their academic skills may still have difficulties, but their performance is usually somewhat better than their counterparts who have been retained.
Studies show that grade retention increases the likelihood, by as much as 40 percent, that your child will not complete high school; if your child is retained more than once, there is an almost 100 percent likelihood that he will later drop out.
Studies of middle and high school students also demonstrate a high social cost of retention; students who are old for their grade level reported higher levels of emotional distress, substance abuse, involvement with violence, and suicidal thoughts.
No matter how well-intentioned, holding a child back a year can send the message that he is a failure and that the teachers do not believe him capable of keeping up with his peers.
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